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ACCIDENTS AND INJURIES CAUSED BY DISTRACTED DRIVING


LOS ANGELES CAR ACCIDENT LAWYER


Distracted driving means driving when you don’t have your complete focus on the crucial task of driving safely. Distracted driving encompasses seemingly harmless behaviors. But in the context of driving, the following behaviors are extremely dangerous:

  • Talking or Texting on Your Phone.
  • Eating or Drinking.
  • Engaging in Conversation With a Passenger in Your Vehicle.
  • Playing Around With the Stereo or Navigation System.

ACCIDENTS AND INJURIES CAUSED BY DISTRACTED DRIVING


According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 3,450 people were killed as recently as 2016 because of a distracted driver. A shocking statistic, and one that becomes all the more tragic due to how preventable those deaths were.

It may seem hard to believe, but the potential for injuries, death, property damage, and skyrocketing medical costs is multiplied exponentially by doing something as harmless as responding to a simple text from a close friend.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined that, on average, nine people are killed every day in the United States because of a distracted driver. More than one thousand people are injured yearly in car accidents involving a distracted driver.

CONSEQUENCES OF DISTRACTED DRIVING


There are three primary types of distracted driving:

  • Visual: not looking at the road or the vehicles around you.
  • Manual: not keeping your hands on the wheel.
  • Cognitive: not keeping your focus on the task of safe driving.

You cannot drive safely unless you’re completely focused on the task of driving. An example that proves this point is texting while driving, which is something that most of us are guilty of doing.

On average, it takes about five seconds to send or read a text. That’s five seconds during which your eyes are not focused on the road. If you’re driving on the freeway at the very reasonable speed of 55 mph, that’s comparable to closing your eyes while driving across the entire length of a football field.

Using your cell phone while driving in the state of California is both dangerous and illegal. You cannot drive while holding a cell phone in your hand for any reason. You can only use your phone in a hands-free manner. Under no circumstances can you ever hold a phone in your hand while driving. It’s worth mentioning that all drivers under the age of 18 are prohibited from using a cell phone for any reason.

COMMON EXAMPLES OF DISTRACTED DRIVING

1) SMOKING RELATED ACTIVITY: SMOKING WHILE DRIVING IS PARTICULARLY RISKY AS IT MEANS THAT FOR A FEW SECONDS BOTH HANDS ARE NO LONGER ON THE WHEEL. SOME PEOPLE ARE SEASONED PROS, BUT LIGHTING A CIGARETTE STILL TAKES A MOMENT. YOUR ATTENTION WILL NOT BE COMPLETELY ON THE ROAD THROUGHOUT THAT TIME. THIS DISTRACTION WILL NECESSARILY REDUCE THE TIME YOU HAVE TO REACT TO SUDDEN CHANGES IN TRAFFIC CONDITIONS OR EMERGENCIES.

2) Eating or Drinking: Eating in the car can be a lot of fun, but reaching into that container of steaming hot fries means you’re unnecessarily distracted for a few seconds, or maybe more, depending on the severity of your appetite.

3) Other Occupants in the Vehicle: One of the most common instances of distracted driving is talking with or looking at the other passengers in your car. Engaging in a particularly emotional or difficult conversation can only increase your level of distraction. There might be a crying child or an upset puppy in the backseat, but your focus must be on the road in front of you at all times.

5) Looking at Something Outside the Car: People are notorious for their curiosity and short attention spans. Anytime we see something shiny, novel, or interesting by the side of the road we may feel curious enough to want to take a closer look. This is known as rubbernecking. Whether you’re taking your eyes off the road to stare at the aftermath of a car accident or to briefly check out a lovely jogger, doing so will create an unnecessary distraction.

6) Daydreaming: Thinking about the evening’s dinner plans or the unruly kids back home means you’re mind is everywhere but where it needs to be. Not being entirely present with the reality of the road unfolding in front of you is dangerous, and it will take longer for you to react to sudden changes in road conditions or emergencies.

CONTACT US TO FIND OUT HOW WE CAN HELP


If you have sustained injuries as a result of another driver’s distracted driving, you have the right to hold that driver responsible. An attorney at our firm can help you recover financial compensation for the losses you have suffered, including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

Call us today at (888) 888-9285 or email info@westcoasttriallawyers.com to schedule a free consultation with our experienced, caring, and compassionate legal team.

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